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Cocaine Addiction Treatment Request

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Cocaine Drug Testing

Cocaine can be detected in the users system for up to 90 days after there last use depending on the type of cocaine drug testing. Urine analysis is the most frequently used and least expensive form of cocaine drug testing used by employers, courts, schools, drug counselors, and rehab centers. The results are taken from your urine sample providing information and indication of recent cocaine use. It is fast, accurate, and easy to perform.

Cocaine is one of the most frequently abused drugs in the United States. It was isolated in 1859 and brought to attention through a series of papers by Dr. Sigmund Freud. Cocaine was subsequently adopted as a topical anesthetic. The non-prescriptive use of cocaine was made illegal by the Harrison Act of 1914.

Cocaine is derived from a plant called Erythroxylon coca. It is a local anesthetic and central nervous system stimulant. Cocaine can be ingested by chewing on coca leaves, smoking, inhaling ("snorting"), or injection. Just like most other powders, cocaine dissolve easily in fat. Because of this property, cocaine has ready access to the brain because it can cross the blood brain barrier so easily. Also, since cocaine dissolves into the user's body fat it can accumulate there and re-enter the blood stream up to 9 days later.

There are five primary types of cocaine drug testing: urine, blood, hair, saliva, and sweat. Cocaine can be detected in the user's blood for an unknown period of time, in the user's saliva for 1 day, in the user's sweat for an unknown period of time, in the user's urine for 4-5 days, and in the user's hair for up to 90 days. There are two substances which can cause a false positive during cocaine drug testing: amoxicillin and tonic water.

Cocaine Drug Testing: Urine Tests

  • The least expensive of the test methods ($7-$50 for home version)
  • Considered an intrusive method of cocaine drug testing
  • Can be done at home (for example by parents) though require lab verification for accurate results
  • Detect use primarily within the past week (longer with regular use)
  • Results can be affected by abstaining from use for a period of time before the test
  • Often temperature tested to insure sample integrity

Cocaine Drug Testing: Saliva Tests

  • A little more expensive than urine cocaine drug testing, but less than hair or blood ($15-$75)
  • Considered a relatively unintrusive method of drug testing
  • Becoming more common
  • Easy to administer but require lab processing to ensure accuracy
  • Detect use primarily within the past few days
  • Can detect more recent use than other testing methods
  • Have no nationally accepted standards or cutoff concentrations for detection, making results greatly dependent on the specific product purchased. This could also make results less-reliable and/or acceptable for legal cases
  • More reliable for detection of Methamphetamine and Opiates, less reliable for THC or Cannabinoids

Cocaine Drug Testing: Hair Tests

  • Currently several times more expensive than urine tests ($100-$150)
  • Considered a relatively unintrusive method of drug testing
  • Detect substance use over a longer period
  • Do not usually detect use within the past week
  • Require a sample of hair about the diameter of a pencil and 1.5 inches long. They can not be done with a single hair
  • Test positive a little more than twice as often as a urine test. In a recent study, out of 1823 paired hair and urine samples, 57 urine samples tested positive for drugs of abuse while 124 hair samples from the same group tested positive
  • Not significantly affected by brief periods of abstinence from drugs
  • Can sometimes be used to determine when use occurred and if it has been discontinued. Drugs, such as opiates (codeine, morphine, heroin) lay down on the hair shaft very tightly and are shown not to migrate along the shaft, thus, if a long segment of hair is available one can draw some "relative" conclusions about when the use occurred. However, cocaine is able to migrate along the shaft making it very difficult to determine when the drug was used and for how long
  • Claims to reliably differentiate between opiate and poppy seed use
  • Many hair tests now check for more than the NIDA 5, and include at least Cannabis, Ecstasy/MDMA, Cocaine, Opiates, Methamphetamine, Amphetamine, Phencyclidine (PCP), Benzodiazepines, & Barbiturates

Cocaine Drug Testing: Blood Tests

  • The most expensive method of testing
  • Considered the most intrusive method of cocaine drug testing
  • The most accurate method of testing
  • The least common method of testing (most likely due to cost).

Cocaine Drug Testing: Sweat (Patch) Tests

  • Considered a relatively intrusive method of cocaine drug testing because they require the wearing of a patch for an extended period of time
  • Still relatively uncommon
  • Controversial in terms of accuracy. There is some reason to believe that surface contamination (such as cannabis smoke) can cause a false reading
  • Can detect use which would not trigger other tests. Because of the short detection period for many drugs in urine, single use of many drugs longer than a week prior to using the patch will not cause a positive urine test. Because the skin patches are gathering sweat over an extended period of time, it is possible that any use during that time will produce a positive result